Posted by: penpatience | November 29, 2016


SI Exifth[10]

WRITERS WORDS: “The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” –Eleanor Roosevelt





Hey folks – it’s that time of year again! A time when everyone traipses “over the river and through the woods” with “sleigh bells ringing” and “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” leading the way. A spruce tree’s tied to the back of the sled for trimming on Christmas Eve when Grandpa’s big, baritone voice bellows “Silent Night” and Grandma brings out trays of home baked cookies, eggnog, cocoa, then sneaks Grandpa a beer encouraging him to belt out another verse of “O Come All Ye Faithful.”  And yes, “we hung stockings with care hoping that St. Nicholas soon would be there.”  If only……

The approaching Yuletide season had me musing about present-day Christmases against Christmases of years past. I asked myself, has Christmas gone to the dogs?

Today, the commercial, retail bombardments begin before Halloween costumes are taken from the shelves. There’s Black Friday, Online Monday, and Small Business Saturday in support of home-town businesses. Some folks quickly gobble down holiday fare and high-tail it over to a mall to catch the one day only holiday special. Cash registers “jingle, jingle all the way.”

For some of us in past generations, childhood holiday recollections were different. It was hopeful, not assured big ticket items like bicycles, wagons, trains, trucks, and special dolls of the season would miraculously appear under the tree Christmas morning. An expectant, hopeful spirit infused the holiday season. Christmas morning, when good old Santa delivered that coveted gift or two, kids would play while holiday dinner aromas wafted through the kitchen and family members came by for dinner–most often, a  relaxing, enjoyable day away from daily work routines and family issues (yes, sometimes old squabbles surface during holiday gatherings.) And children believed in Santa Claus until some smarty-pants kid in grade school squealed, “you dummy, don’t you know there ain’t no Santa Claus” or they found Mom’s hidden stash of  holiday gifts stuffed in an upstairs closet.

Share with me this crazy Christmas “ditty” that popped into my head while writing this musing sung to the tune of “Oh Where Oh Where Has My Little Dog Gone:”

Oh where, oh where has my Christmas gone

Oh where, oh where, can it be?

With its costs so high and the spirits so low

Oh where, oh where did it go?

So, has Christmas really gone to the dogs?  Nah! Although the holiday spirit may be buried beneath a heavy dose of commercialism, underneath the enormous pile of ripped away gift wrap, many different religious and spiritual beliefs continue to flourish. This holiday season I may bark in commercial protest but I know if dog bowls are kept filled with spiritual bones the true spirit of Christmas will prevail and thrive.

Dear Readers and Writers: Above all, remember to remain safe this holiday season. Don’t drink and drive. Don’t overload electrical circuits with too many lights. Keep a live Christmas tree watered and unplug it when you’re away from home.

Merry Christmas – Happy New Year to you and yours.


  1. Love this!


    • Great insight and observation into this holiday season. I agree with your commentary concerning the commercialism in contrast with the spiritualism of Christmas. What tends to be more prevalent on the societal surface is often not what is most significant or meaningful. I really enjoyed this. Good work.


      • Thank you for the great comment, Will. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year


    • Thank you. Suggestions for New Year 2017 topics are always welcomed!


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